The list of anticipated reads is short this month, but I’m still excited. I’ve read from all of these authors before and want to see if they have written new favorites for me. I’ve hyperlinked the titles if you want to explore any of them more. I’m an Amazon Affiliate, so I may receive a small kickback if you use them, but your cost won’t change.
1. What Stays Buried by Suzanne Young
I loved The Remedy by this author, but I didn’t know she wrote middle grades too. I may have to read this one to see if I like it too. After all, what’s not to like about a pre-teen medium?
Perfect for fans of Bone Hollow and The Peculiar Incident on Shady Street,this thrilling yet heartfelt ghost story—following a twelve-year-old medium facing an evil spirit and the loss of her supernatural gift—is New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Young’s middle grade debut.
Twelve-year-old Calista Wynn is about to lose her ability to talk with the dead.
Once she turns thirteen, she will no longer be able to see or speak with spirits. And with only a few weeks left, children have started going missing.
When Calista meets the Tall Lady—an angry spirit with a grudge against Calista, her family, and the entire town—she knows she’s found the ghost responsible for the disappearances.
It’s up to Calista, the only one who can see the Tall Lady, to stop her. If she doesn’t, Calista won’t just lose her powers…she’ll lose everyone she has left.
A ghost story like no other, What Stays Buried brings together a riveting mystery, a moving coming-of-age journey, and a poignant reminder that those we’ve loved and lost are never far away.
2. Dear Medusa by Olivia A. Cole
This one is super different from the other books I’ve read from her. I love her smart characters, world building, and dialogue. I also love books that tackle uncomfortable topics like sexual abuse because it makes those who’ve suffered feel less alone. Pair that with a Medusa retelling and . . . well, I may have to try this.
This searing and intimate novel in verse follows a sixteen-year-old girl coping with sexual abuse as she grapples with how to reclaim her story, her anger, and her body in a world that seems determined to punish her for the sin of surviving.
“This is more than a story about sexual violence – this book is about race, sexuality, love, and how anger can be a catalyst for healing.”
—Gabrielle Union, best-selling author, actress and producer
Sixteen-year-old Alicia Rivers has a reputation that precedes her. But there’s more to her story than the whispers that follow her throughout the hallways at school—whispers that splinter into a million different insults that really mean: a girl who has had sex. But what her classmates don’t know is that Alicia was sexually abused by a popular teacher, and that trauma has rewritten every cell in her body into someone she doesn’t recognize. To the world around her, she’s been cast, like the mythical Medusa, as not the victim but the monster of her own story: the slut who asked for it.
Alicia was abandoned by her best friend, quit the track team, and now spends her days in detention feeling isolated and invisible. When mysterious letters left in her locker hint at another victim, Alicia struggles to keep up the walls she’s built around her trauma. At the same time, her growing attraction to a new girl in school makes her question what those walls are really keeping out.
“[This] fierce and brightly burning feminist roar…paints a devastating and haunting portrait of a vulnerable young woman discovering the power of her voice, her courage, and her rage.” –Samira Ahmed, New York Times bestselling author of Internment and Hollow Fires
3. Amelia Gray is Almost Okay by Jessica Brody
I moved around a lot as a kid, but not nearly as much as Amelia Gray. Even so, one of my favorite things about changing school was being able to reinvent myself, so I think I’ll totally relate to this middle grades.
When you can choose to be anyone, how do you know who you really are? From the author of Better You Than Me and I Speak Boy comes another fun and relatable book about new experiences and how staying true to yourself is the best way to be okay.
Twelve-year-old Amelia Gray has changed schools thirty-nine times (!!!) because of her dad’s job, which doesn’t leave a lot of time for making friends. But that’s okay. Amelia loves her “life on the go” with Dad and their adorable supermutt, Biscotti. She’s been in enough middle schools to know that friendships are messy, and who needs that?
But when her dad announces that he wants to stay in their new town for the whole summer—maybe even forever—Amelia realizes she’s going to have to do the one thing she’s never had to do: fit in.
So she gives herself not one but three total makeovers, to try out a few personalities and hopefully find her “thing.” Is she Amie, a confident track star? Mellie, a serious journalist? Or Lia, a bold theater kid?
Juggling three identities is hard, and Amelia soon finds herself caught in the kind of friendship drama she has always managed to avoid. Yet despite her best efforts, she still can’t answer the most important question of all: Who is the real Amelia Gray?
4. The Survivor by Charlie Donlea
I tried Charlie Donlea for the first time last year when my library book club picked Some Choose Darkness. It was absolutely amazing. I love the way he writes smart women and neurodiversity. I immediately continued with The Suicide House, and I’ve been eager to read another by him since.
From the #1 internationally bestselling author and master of modern suspense comes a brilliantly twisting and propulsive standalone novel about a woman whose dark past as the lone survivor of her family’s slaughter collides with present-day crimes.
Alex Armstrong has changed everything about herself—her name, her appearance, her backstory. She’s no longer the terrified teenager a rapt audience saw on television, emerging in handcuffs from the quiet suburban home the night her family was massacred. That girl, Alexandra Quinlan, was accused of the killings, fought to clear her name, and later took the stand during her highly publicized defamation lawsuit that captured the attention of the nation.
It’s been ten years since, and Alex hasn’t stopped searching for answers about the night her family was killed, even as she continues to hide her real identity from true crime fanatics and grasping reporters still desperate to locate her. As a legal investigator, she works tirelessly to secure justice for others, too. People like Matthew Claymore, who’s under suspicion in the disappearance of his girlfriend, a student journalist named Laura McAllister.
Laura was about to break a major story about rape and cover-ups on her college campus. Alex believes Matthew is innocent, and unearths stunning revelations about the university’s faculty, fraternity members, and powerful parents willing to do anything to protect their children.
Most shocking of all—as Alex digs into Laura’s disappearance, she realizes there are unexpected connections to the murder of her own family. For as different as the crimes may seem, they each hinge on one sinister truth: no one is quite who they seem to be . . .
Are you looking forward to any of these books? Let me know in the comments.